We are all victims of the same crime, there is no running from it. We are also all guilty of this, too. You can’t help it, no one can. It can’t be stopped, and sometimes it hurts. Then you turn around and do what has been done to you. Passing judgment happens no matter what. Anyone who says that they do not judge others is lying.
Judgment is not always a bad thing, but it can be if it becomes a steadfast belief with nothing to back it up. If you know nothing about someone, how can you judge? Most of the time a judgment is nothing more than a false accusation. Forming an opinion about someone without getting to know him or her can be bad not only because it may be untrue, but because usually it is unkind. Compare how often you find yourself saying “Wow, what a nice person” to the number of times you say, “What a jerk” or other negative comments.
Often people make comments about others and don’t even believe what they say, but say it just for a laugh. Don’t deny it, you know you have done it. I admit I have, but you can make it right. Give that person a chance.
Judging others doesn’t lead to good. It’s how rumors get started, feelings get hurt, and tempers flare. You are better off keeping what you think buried because what really matters is the truth about you. I am writing this because all my life people have judged me, pointing fingers and saying things that stay with me. Others have started rumors, and why? For a laugh.
If you heard something said about you that was hurtful and untrue, how would you feel? What would your first reaction be? To judge them, probably. You’d say, “That person is mean.” Do you know this is true? If you think so then you believe it about yourself because you have judged and insulted that person in return. Now these two people will go through a lot of time with hearts filled with resentment.
Give people a chance. Talk to those whom you wouldn’t normally and get to know them. You are no better than they and they are no better than you. They could end up being really cool.
There is no way to stop others from judging; it is natural. But don’t let it get the better of you. You don’t know who someone is because of what you hear about them. Form your opinions from what you experience.
Take a chance. People who didn’t know me and who judged me for themselves took a chance and we formed great friendships. Give it a try. Think about what really matters in life.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.